Saturday, May 29, 2010

Who doesn't love a good surprise?

Tonight was all about surprises. First we went to Farbs Kitchen & Wine Bar and enjoyed some drinks and appetizers on the patio. It was a surprise birthday evening for one of the guests so the night kicked off with some surprise guests that he didn't know would be in attendance. Once we had a cocktail, we enjoyed some lovely small plates. I opted for a Sauvignon Blanc from Niagara with a gravlax and asparagus salad with pine nuts and creme fraiche. As a lovely surprise, our friendly waiter offered us some unexpected and decadent chocolate truffles as we went on our way to our next location. I definitely plan to return for dinner sometime.

We then headed to Fraser Cafe, where I once enjoyed a tasty brunch. Once again met by some great service, three of us in the party opted for the Chefs' choice entree, also known as "the surprise". It is so fun and refreshing to dine with people who are open to allowing the Chef to decide what they'll eat that night. I had an inkling that our wine choices helped dictate our dishes, but nonetheless everything was delicious and suited each guest perfectly. The birthday boy was very pleased with his lamb two ways, his friend enjoyed the duck breast, and I loved the curried halibut and mussels with a papadom drizzled with a yogurt and cucumber sauce.

I am often the one still pouring over the menu after the rest of the group has ordered, so I welcomed this "surprise" option with an open mind and a receptive palate! It not only allows you to enjoy a bit of mystery in your evening, but I would hope that this option is also fun for the Chefs as they get to experiment and flex their creative culinary muscles a bit more in the kitchen. I think more restaurants should have this option! All in all the evening was a success and great fun was had by all, mostly due to the surprise elements, I'm sure.

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